CEO Update: Spring is a Time for Change

Spring brings changes in the weather from snow to rain and warm sunny days. Or in Colorado… spring brings sun, wind, rain, and continued snow. In fact all four seasons can occur within 24 hours. In the spirit of the season, we’re springing our 2013 annual report, which is a time for us to reflect on a great year.

Your State Office of Rural Health and State Rural Health Association

The Colorado Rural Health Center (CRHC) was created in 1991 to provide healthcare resources in the state by providing information, education, linkages, tools, and energy towards addressing rural health issues. This mission is still in place today – 23 years later. The guide for helping us achieve our mission is through our 2013-2015 strategic plan, which focuses on membership support, engagement, and participation; policy and advocacy; collaboration; and financial viability. All of these facets help us to provide programs critical to help rural healthcare facilities and communities thrive.

A Reflection of 2013

A review of the 2013 annual report showcases how our programs and services support rural healthcare in Colorado. CRHC is proud to have had a positive annual economic impact of physicians placed of $7,100,000, we served 205 communities, provided support to 317 providers through health information technology, 150 providers and 11 hospitals reached Meaningful Use. We had the opportunity to award $648,000 in funding for public and private organizations to create and train emergency medical and trauma providers, and participation in events and education increased by 38 percent. Many of our programs and resources aim to address the healthcare workforce shortage, data reporting, quality improvement and systems and process changes. Thanks to all of you for your engagement in these efforts and we look forward to continuing to enhance these services and opportunities. You can find our Annual Report video report here.

Built for Rural

Today is the launch of our first data bank, the Health Awareness for Rural Communities (HARC). The HARC Data Dank was created to solely examine the dynamics of rural and frontier counties in Colorado, through the use of quantitative measures. Through the HARC Data Bank, users will have access to population health data measuring progress toward Healthy People 2020 goals and Colorado’s 10 Winnable Battles. Improving population health will continue to plan a key role in the changing environment of healthcare. Critical access hospitals (CAH) and rural health clinics (RHC) are poised to lead the efforts in improving population health. In fact many of you are already actively engaged in community engagement, wellness programs, and care coordination. HARC will help us help you achieve your goals with data to support your strategy to improve health. We will help you strengthen the narrative of the story we tell as we advocate on behalf of you, your patients, and the communities you serve. Click here to read the HARC Issue Paper.

Thank you again for continued engagement with the Colorado Rural Health Center and together our strength is community!

Much is happening in healthcare. Check out my monthly CEO update for the latest in rural healthcare.


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